Saturday, March 7, 2020

Three Secrets to Teaching Your Kids to Choose Confidence Over Fear - Guest Post by Ryan Maule


3 Secrets to Teaching Your Kids to Choose Confidence Over Fear
By Ryan Maule, author of the children’s book I Am Awesome!

Being a parent of a child in grade school means constantly sitting on the edge of your seat. Changes are happening all the time that affect the way your child reacts and responds to everyday life situations. This makes parenting overwhelming, feeling like you’re just sitting around waiting to come up with answers to issues you didn’t realize would come up in the first place. 

One of those changes seen regularly is a loss in self-esteem or confidence. Many parents face the dilemma of seeing confidence deplete with little to no understanding of what’s going on or how it happened. Most of the time we don’t even notice until the confidence has dropped so far that we wonder how it will ever recover!

So, what happened? If you’re like me, it’s easy to remember the moments where your child looked like they were absolutely unstoppable. I’ve seen my daughter take on roller coasters that made me nauseas, introduce herself to a group of strangers where I hoped to just blend in and get ignored, and perform, sing, and dance in front of crowds that make even the most confident of parents wonder “where did this kid come from?!” For a while it seemed like the only thing that scared her was Santa Claus.

But then, without notice or warning, she doesn’t have that confidence anymore. She doesn’t want to perform, she’s withdrawn, she doesn’t want to go on even simple child rides, or stand out at school or in small groups. 

Where did the confidence go?

The reality is that these depletions in confidence are normal and common throughout not only the growing up process, but throughout your child’s entire life. These life tests never go away. The trick is to be able to recognize and label the problem that is always getting in the way. It can be called many things and summed up into one word: fear.

Fear is the main reason your children lose some or most of their self-confidence. It can be discovering the fear of death, the fear of judgement, the fear of disapproval, the fear of disappointment, the fear of embarrassment, or even the fear of simply failing. They could even just be scared in general. Fear is always present and will never fully go away. Fear is the amplifier of all the negative outcomes in every situation that we hold in the back of our mind. 

The secret is to teach our children how to react to fear in order to maintain and build their confidence. To do this, I have three easy secrets to help your kids choose confidence over fear.

1. Teach Your Children to Recognize and Admit Their Fears

Most situations where confidence is attacked are never recognized because we allow ourselves to get away with lying to each other. Instead of properly saying “I’m afraid of” or “I’m scared to,” we allow bad excuses and “I just don’t want to’s” to be acceptable answers. Teaching your kids to identify the thoughts and feelings that are fear-related helps them to create the potential for a stronger, more confident response. 

2. Make A Rule of No Hypotheticals

This secret is one that all families should use and applies to both adults and children. Hypotheticals are imaginary negative outcomes and more commonly, fantasy worst-case scenarios. It’s so easy to think up disasters and failures and play them out like a movie in your mind. The answer is to not allow them. No hypotheticals means basing your decision on only the things that are facts and that you already know. By not allowing your worst-case scenario to impact your decision, you create opportunities where positive outcomes are truly possible.

3. Discuss Past Successes!

When you’re in the moment, it’s hard to remember past experience. Sometimes all you need is a little reminder of great moments of past confidence to inspire more instances of future confidence!

“Do you remember that time you did this same thing and it went perfectly?!”

“Mom and I were so proud of you the last time you handled a situation like this!”

“You are awesome at this!”

“This is nothing for you!”

“You could do this in your sleep!”

By drawing on past successes, your children will start to see beyond the fear and see themselves conquering the world!

RYAN MAULE is the author of the children’s book I Am Awesome! He is also a nationally recognized and highly sought-after motivational speaker, host of the popular Expect Awesome Podcast, and the president of Integrity Doctors, the world’s largest chiropractic business organization. Over the last 15 years Ryan has traveled the world spreading the message of expecting awesome and building a stronger self-image in order to gain a God-powered confidence. Ryan is happily married to his awesome wife Amber and they live in Florida with their two awesome kids, Summer Grace and Nolan Zeal.

Friday, March 6, 2020

I Am Awesome by Ryan K Maule Illustrated by L.M. Phang - REVIEWED

About the Book:
I Am Awesome!  tells the story of two robots named Grace and Zeal who live in Goodland, a land created by an Inventor where everyone and everything is Good. When Grace and Zeal meet a new invention who claims to be Awesome and not just Good they set off for the Inventor’s workshop to get some answers. There they discover the truth – that they are worth more than they ever realized.
“I want kids of all ages to live with a God-powered self-worth and confidence,” says Ryan. “I want to impact lives and inspire both kids and parents to achieve and go for more.”


“Ultimately with I Am Awesome! I want to teach children that it’s not just a good thing to have confidence, it’s what God wants!” adds Ryan. “He wants you to live an awesome life with Him by your side through it all.”

About the Author:
RYAN MAULE is a nationally recognized and highly sought-after motivational speaker, host of the popular Expect Awesome Podcast, and the president of Integrity Doctors, the world’s largest chiropractic business organization. Over the last 15 years Ryan has traveled the world spreading the message of expecting awesome and building a stronger self-image in order to gain a God-powered confidence. Ryan is happily married to his awesome wife Amber and they live in Florida with their two awesome kids, Summer Grace and Nolan Zeal. 

Learn more about Ryan and I Am Awesome! at www.ryankmaule.com and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

I Am Awesome! is available on Amazon.

MY THOUGHTS:  After 5 decades of living and raising two children to adulthood, I can honestly say that I wish there were folks writing the words of truth and affirmation that are contained in Maule's book I Am Awesome!  He uses easy to grasp concepts to present the truth about how fearfully and wonderfully ALL of God's children are.   Only humans are created in God's image, and Jesus lived died and rose again to show us the great love our Father has for us.  

Maule doesn't go into all of that - that is what I'm learning all over again in a new way as an adult.  God's creation  - each one of us - is unique and equipped to do something to make the world a more beautiful place.  Don't settle for good. You are AWESOME!!

Thank you Ryan Maule for expressing God's love for His children in a way that children of ALL ages  can remember how awesome we are made!!

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Ishmael Covenant by Terry Brennan - Reviewed and GIVE AWAY!!


About the Book:
His marriage in tatters and his career ruined by lies, Diplomatic Security Service agent Brian Mullaney is at the end of his rope. Banished to Israel as punishment by his agency, he's assigned to guard a US ambassador and an insignificant box. Little does he know that this new job will propel him straight into a crisis of global proportions.


Inside the box is a messianic prophecy about the fate of the world. And a dark enemy known as The Turk and the forces of evil at his command are determined to destroy the box, the prophecy, and the Middle East as we know it. When Ambassador Cleveland gets in the way, his life and his daughter's life are threatened--and Mullaney must act fast.

Now agents of three ancient empires have launched covert operations to secure nuclear weapons, in direct defiance of the startling peace treaty Israel and its Arab neighbors have signed. And a traitor in the US State Department is leaking critical information to a foreign power. It's up to Mullaney--still struggling with his own broken future--to protect the embassy staff, thwart the clandestine conspiracies, and unmask a traitor--before the desert is turned into a radioactive wasteland.

Fans of Joel C. Rosenberg, Steven James, and Ted Dekker will relish the deadly whirlpool of international intrigue and end-times prophecy in Ishmael Covenant--and will eagerly await the rest of this new trilogy.

Read and excerpt HERE!!

About the Author:


Terry Brennan is the award-winning author of The Sacred Cipher, The Brotherhood Conspiracy, and The Aleppo Code, the three books in The Jerusalem Prophecies series. His latest release, Ishmael Covenant is the first in his new series, Empires of Armageddon.

A Pulitzer Prize is one of the many awards Brennan accumulated during his 22-year newspaper career. The Pottstown (PA) Mercury won the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing for a two-year series published while he led the team as the newspaper’s Editor.

Starting out as a sportswriter in Philadelphia, Brennan became an editor and publisher for newspapers in Pennsylvania, Illinois, and New York and later moved to the corporate staff of Ingersoll Publications (400 newspapers in the U.S., Ireland and England) as Executive Editor of all U.S. newspaper titles.

In 1996, Brennan transitioned into the nonprofit sector, spending 12 years as VP Operations for The Bowery Mission and six years as Chief Administrative Officer for Care for the Homeless,  both in New York City.

Terry and his wife, Andrea, now live in Danbury, CT.

More on Brennan can be found at www.terrybrennanauthor.com. He is also on Facebook (Terry Brennan) and Twitter (@terrbrennan1).

My Review:
There has always been a lot of mystery and speculation surrounding Jerusalem and her people - God's chosen people.  The world has looked on, and in some cases, fought and died to protect both the people and the land that history has validated as their home.  Terry Brennan's imagination and political insight, his reporter's thirst for facts and his heart God and all His people combine to create a story that will captivate and thrill anyone willing to open to the first page!

There are many characters in play, and Brennan skillfully weaves the story line back in forth between the truth and deception surrounding a prophecy that has been protected and passed down for centuries.  There are moments that will cause the reader to hold their breath in terror and anticipation of what lies just past the next turn of the page.  The pace is fast and furious, but not so fast that you miss both the political and spiritual forces in play as the fight to bring the truth to light in its perfect timing.

I'm thrilled to know that this is the first in a series, because I was left at a very harrowing precipice as I read the final pages!!  I recommend this book to anyone that hungers for a thrilling what-if exploration of all the the war fare that takes place around God's chosen people.  It's real but not real, and you will be left hungry for more! 

Enter HERE to win your chance to win a copy of your own!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Strong Brave Loved by Holly Gerth - REVIEWED

About the Book:
Bestselling author Holley Gerth feels like your best friend, your supportive sister, and your biggest cheerleader. She understands that you want to be a woman who looks life in the face and says, "You can't beat me." A woman who knows love is a risk and reaches out anyway. A woman who understands kindness takes real courage. Who doesn't fake it or try to hide her scars. Who fights to believe she is who God says she is and helps others do the same.

Strong, Brave, Loved offers 60 short devotions to empower you to be that kind of woman. It's simple, personal, and practical, with room for you to journal your own responses and reflections. With these concise and compassionate devotions, Holley leads you on a journey of discovery as you learn to live in freedom, hope, and holy courage.

My Thoughts:
Holly Gerth is the absolute best at making the reader feel as though she is sitting across the table with you and sharing a cup a coffee with a friend.  Her latest book has taken this sense of conversation to a greater level by providing space after each devotion to share your own thoughts, prayers and response to her devotional.  

Holly always builds from the firm foundation of God's Word, and very personally and gently leads the reader away from the lies of the enemy and straight toward God's truth.  I think what I enjoy most about Holly's writing is that you always feel like you are being talked to as a person of equal worth.  After reading her work for so long, I finally know that she truly wants everyone who reads her work to know that she is God's unique masterpiece.

Her books have seen me through many major life events, and given me strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other.  I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this book to everyone!   

About the Author:
Holley Gerth is a best-selling writer, licensed counselor, certified life coach and speaker. She is cofounder of (in)courage, an online destination for women, which received more than one million page views in its first six months. She also reaches out to readers through her popular blog at www.holleygerth.com and a partnership with DaySpring. Holley lives in the South with her husband, Mark.

Thursday, August 8, 2019

An Interview with Denise Pass, Author of Shame Off You


Shame is an assault on the core of who we are. It assassinates our character, minimizes our worth, and dashes our hope. Like Adam and Eve, we often hide shame, but hiding never heals it. Left unattended, shame can develop into a crippling reality that paralyzes us. Like an infectious disease, shame impacts everyone . . . but not all shame is bad.

Shame can either be an oppressive and powerful tool of worldly condemnation or a source of conviction that God uses to bring his people back to himself. Having the discernment to know the difference and recognize shame in its many forms can change the course of one’s life.

In a transparently honest style, Denise Pass shares of her experience dealing with shame after learning that her former husband was a sexual offender. Having lived through the aftermath, she leads you into God’s Word where you will see for yourself that God is bigger than your pain, shame, mistakes, and limitations.

Shame Off You (available from Abingdon Press) shares how freedom can be found in choosing to break the cycle of shame by learning from the past, developing healthy thinking patterns, silencing lies, and overcoming the traps of vanity and other people’s opinions.


Q: Can you start us off by sharing a little bit of your own story?

I did not realize just how significant of an impact shame had on my life until I started writing this book. I don’t think I recognized all I was experiencing in my life as shame. Shame affected me in profound ways—from worrying to the point of obsession about what others thought of me to shame from my past, present and in the future. Shame was pervasively impacting all of life: how I related to others, processed my perception of myself and responded in social situations. Shame was snuffing out my hope and life, and it felt like I had no way out.

Then in 2007, God revealed to me my (then) husband was a sex offender and some of our children were his victims. This revelation crushed us, and the ensuing shame was crippling. I had waited for marriage and married a Christian man. We were that homeschool family. It did not seem possible. But it was. Through that devastating season, my children and I drew nearer to God, reading the Bible through and clinging to His precious promises. I continued to home educate, and we put one foot in front of the other. Through a five-year long court battle. Through tragic new revelations. Through sorrow up on sorrow and financial woes. God was our God through all of it and the lessons we learned as shame lost its grip on our souls were priceless.

Now, my four oldest are all in college and walking with God, and my youngest son who I adopted from Russia is still home educated by the grace of God. And me? God brought a precious man into my life who I call my Kinsman Redeemer. There’s more about him (my “Bo”—short for Boaz) in the book.

Q: At its root, what is shame, and why is it so detrimental to us?

There are many roots underlying what we call shame.  Shame is the broad term used, but there are so many things interwoven in our culture that we accept as “normal.” Shame is an accusation on our soul that says we are not enough. News flash—we are not enough—but God is. He is our righteousness and removes all of our sin and shame. Shame is peer pressure and the fear of man—we would not have shame if we did not have an audience. Shame is a label or box that imprisons our souls and steals our joy. Shame is detrimental because it gives us a false identity and keeps us from living the abundant life Jesus promises, distracting us from the mission we have been called to.

Q: What are some of the most common underlying sources of shame? Is shame always caused by a sin a person commits him/herself?

Shame is a head game that we do to ourselves most of the time, but there is also plenty of social shaming that goes on—shunning and people condemning one another. While sin invites shame into our lives as a natural consequence, shame is prevalent within our culture. We come by it naturally and so we don’t question it. Expectations cause shame to rise when we don’t meet them. Comparison. Pride. These are huge contributors to the game of shame. The presence of shame in our lives is ultimately a spiritual matter. We feel the truth behind the statement that we are not enough. We accept this condemnation, but it can become our vindication. We are not enough. That’s ok, because Christ is our Righteousness. The enemy of our souls is always accusing us, but our Savior is always interceding for us. 

Q: Shame typically surrounds a situation the public is aware of, at least in the mind of the person walking through it. How can the church community be more supportive of a member suffering with shame?

Great question. We would not have shame if we did not have an audience. It is this fear of man and focus on self that makes us feel so very exposed as we seek acceptance and to snuff out rejection. In my situation, I felt like the church did not know how to handle sex abuse situations, so they didn’t. I was told to be silent. The shame culture thrives in silence. However, being able to talk about it in a God-honoring way and having support instead of isolation would take the sting out of shame and turn it on its head. When we protect the violator and silence the victims, we are propagating and promoting shame.

Q: In what ways do we intentionally or unintentionally heap shame on others?

We live in a society of labels. People try to define one another by false identities based on their performance—good or bad, or their status in this life. When we move away from our identity being in Christ, we find that our identity falls short. Shame was introduced to man in the garden of Eden. We left perfection and chose an insecure, shame-filled culture, instead. Discontent with our lot, comparison and the fear or man have robbed us confidence and plagued us with shame in all of life. Shame is also used as a tool of power by people who seek to subject others, shaming them into submission. And again, shame is in our culture, so it is fairly invisible. We just accept it as part of life, which can cause us to unintentionally continue in the shame culture.

Q: How is Shame Off You set up and designed to be used?

Shame Off You is the story of a girl who shrunk her shame. It is a guide for recognizing the shame all around us and how to rid ourselves of shame biblically. There is a biblical lens of Truth, Humility and Grace that we view shame through, as well as Cycles of Shame and Redemption, a Shame Spectrum and Shame Quiz so we can evaluate how shame is impacting our lives. There is also a resource guide in the back of the book that covers 40 different common shames we might encounter along with Scriptures to combat that shame.

Shame Off You systematically covers everything from feeling shunned and rejected, to being shy, to worrying about what others thought or said about me to traumatic shame that paralyzes us.

Q: What are the steps to overcoming shame?

Shame distracts us from the mission of God and keeps us from living on mission for Christ. It causes us to focus on self and limits our worth. It hurts our relationship with God and others and causes us to live defeated, discouraged lives. It has to be dealt with. Recognizing shame’s presence is necessary to be able to deal with it effectively.

From recognition, we need to discern whether we are dealing with condemnation or conviction. Condemnation is based on works whereas Conviction is based on relationship. Once we know what we are dealing with, we need to consult God’s word and use a biblical filter to evaluate our shame and then let it go. We defeat shame not by mere words. And hiding shame does not heal it. We have to face shame and deal with it biblically to be set free. We don’t get rid of shame because it humbles us—but because it prevents us from living the abundant life Christ promises, reaching those around us.


Denise Pass, author of Shame Off You, is an award-winning CCM recording artist and singer-songwriter, accomplished writer/blogger, speaker and worship leader at women’s conferences as well as a worship leader on staff at her home church. After a crushing discovery of her former husband’s hidden life and surviving a painful divorce, she now shares an inspirational message through her ministry, Seeing Deep Ministries, about seeing the deeper truth in God’s word when life hurts.

Denise also founded and directed a home educational co-op for 12 years and engaged in many educational pursuits, including forming and directing a classical children’s choir. A graduate from the University of Maryland, Denise now resides in Virginia, with her “Kinsman Redeemer” husband and five children.

Learn more about Shame Off You at https://shameoffyou.life/the-book. You can also find out more about Denise Pass at DenisePass.com. She can also be found on Facebook (Denise Pass – Author/Speaker/ Worship Leader) and Twitter (@TheDenisePass).

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Shame Off you by Denise Pass

About the Book:

Learn to recognize and process feelings of shame in a biblical way to restore God-ordained self-worth and hope.

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” — Romans 8:1 

Shame is an assault on the core of who we are. It assassinates our character, minimizes our worth, and dashes our hope. Like Adam and Eve, we often hide shame, but hiding never heals it. Left unattended, shame can develop into a crippling reality that paralyzes us. Like an infectious disease, shame impacts everyone . . . but not all shame is bad.

Shame can either be an oppressive and powerful tool of worldly condemnation or a source of conviction that God uses to bring his people back to himself. Having the discernment to know the difference and recognize shame in its many forms can change the course of one’s life.

In a transparently honest style, Pass shares of her experience dealing with shame after learning that her former husband was a sexual offender. Having lived through the aftermath, she leads you into God’s Word where you will see for yourself that God is bigger than your pain, shame, mistakes, and limitations.

Shame Off You shares how freedom can be found in choosing to break the cycle of shame by learning from the past, developing healthy thinking patterns, silencing lies, and overcoming the traps of vanity and other people's opinions.

Learn more at 
https://shameoffyou.life/the-book.

About the author:

Denise Pass, author of Shame Off You, is an award-winning CCM recording artist and singer-songwriter, accomplished writer/blogger, speaker and worship leader at women’s conferences as well as a worship leader on staff at her home church. After a crushing discovery of her former husband’s hidden life as a repetitive sex offender, and surviving a painful divorce, she now shares an inspirational message through her ministry, Seeing Deep Ministries, about seeing the deeper truth in God’s word when life hurts. Denise also founded and directed a home educational co-op for 12 years and engaged in many educational pursuits, including forming and directing a classical children’s choir. A graduate from the University of Maryland, Denise now resides in Virginia, with her “Kinsman Redeemer” husband and five children.

Find her online at DenisePass.com.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

The Missing Money: Money Monsters by Okeoma Moronu Schreiner Illustrated by Sandhya Prabhat


About the Book:
Kai Akana is your typical little boy. He is thoughtful and brave in his own way.  He has big dreams and an even bigger imagination. In THE MISSING MONEY Kai receives a cash gift (YAY!) from his grandmother but soon "loses" his money to what he believes is a Money Monster.  Kai musters up all his courage and creates a plan to save his money. Luckily, before Kai commits a potential crime, his mother sits him down to explain what happened to his money. Through this adventure Kai learns some important money basics the basics of banking, saving and modern banking technology. 

My Thoughts:
It has been several years since I've had young children in my home, but I am thrilled when I can support someone who taps into a child's imagination and explores things from that perspective.  Kai's experience with an ATM machine is fun and amazing all at once!  What is an almost daily experience in the life of the adult's in his life becomes a rather scary concept for a child who doesn't have the fainest idea of how the banking process takes place.

I thought it was brilliant that Kai waited until he thought his parents were calm before he presented his fears about the Money Monster! His parents responded in a way that was both respectful and empowering by explaining the deposit process, and giving him an ATM card to access his money.  Parents can take a learning queue from the author and be careful not to diminish a child's fear of a concept that is difficult to grasp from their perspective.

This book is going to provide endless hours of conversation and teachable moments between children and their parents.  Bravo!

About the Author:
 Okeoma Moronu is a corporate finance attorney, mother of two and former teacher. She is a graduated from Columbia Law School in 2011 with over $200,000 in student loans and has paid off those loans. In the process of becoming debt free she became quite the personal finance nerd.


Her hope is that the Money Monsters series will create opportunities for parents, teachers, and educators to have money conversations with children that will spark an interest and develop a curiosity, comfort and confidence that will last a lifetime.

Sandhya Prahbat, is the illustrator of the Money Monsters world. She hand painted and digitally rendered a series of dynamic, fun and interesting images that bring Kai's adventure to life for your little one's reading pleasure.  You can learn more about Sandhya at  http://www.sandhyaprabhat.com/